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“I have anger issues” he said quietly

excerpt: “History of the Groove, drummer’s story” Russell Buddy Helm ©2013 all rights reserved

“I have anger issues.” He said quietly.

2013. We were drumming, facing each other in a small alcove overlooking a pleasant canyon backyard garden. He seemed to be a normal looking middle aged Anglo man. He had checked himself into this recovery facility and was getting very good care from a professional staff of therapists, nutritionists, meditation teachers, etc. He was drumming because he was desperate to find a solution to his condition; his family, his job, his life was at stake. I suggested he continue to hit just the downbeat in a repetitive, relaxed manner while he talked about anything; the weather, his past. The drumming of the downbeat opens up the unconscious and allows it to speak truthfully.

“I was severely beaten as a child by my father, at my mother’s request.”  He said with almost a sense of shame. I let him continue while I maintained a steady relaxed tempo, keeping the deep downbeat tone moving into his body and mind. He continued to talk until he just grew quiet, yet still kept the downbeat going. I suggested we do the inner child drumming mantra; “You’re safe with me, now.” We said this in unison, while hitting the downbeat. I gradually slowed the tempo down to a crawl; about twenty beats a minute. He got tears in his eyes and I suggested he let himself cry. A few tears came up but he was also perspiring heavily. It was a lot of emotional work. “Just keep hitting the downbeat.” I suggested, and he drummed through the thoughts that were coming up. He seemed to be getting through it.

The inner child is very worldly; he or she has heard all the psychobabble; ‘talk is cheap’. They are still stuck in their situation. The inner child is a hero, they are “holding off the bad guys” and are forced to create a split in their young being, telling their fractured selves something like; “You get out of here. Go live your life. Grow up and forget about me. I have to stay here and hold off the bad guys. Now get out of here while you can!” The gentle drumming creates a bridge back to our inner child, where we can reunite with our innocent earlier selves and gain the gifts that our child has been holding onto; love, awe, happiness, creativity, trust, joy, fun. In return, our adult selves can take care of the child. It is a bonding between two halves of our selves that I have witnessed many times and it still brings tears to my eyes.

“Thank you. You have opened up a new door for me.” He said. He left and said that he would email me about his progress. But like most of the people I work with, I never hear from them again.  Once in a while I will get a great response, and that helps many other people too. It is an ongoing therapy; an evolution of consciousness. The results are what counts.

excerpt: “History of the Groove, drummer’s story” Russell Buddy Helm ©2013 all rights reserved

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